Early Literacy Research Library (ELRL) - Article

Shared Reading: Parental Attitudes Practices, and Barriers in Turkey

Celik, P., Ozdereli, Z., Sen, M.B., Karakutuk, A., Altunkaya, G.B., Celenk, N. (2022) Shared Reading: Parental Attitudes, Practices, and Barriers in Turkey. Journal of Paediatrics and Child Health, 59, 264-270.,

Access: Institutional Access

Publication year


study description

Prospective, Descriptive

core topic(s)

Shared Reading

Population Characteristics


Exposures, Outcomes, Other

Language and Literacy Development , Parent Behaviors and Skills , Parent Knowledge, Attitudes, and Beliefs


Understanding the nature of parent-child shared reading (SR) practices is important to reach children's developmental potential and subsequent achievement. We evaluated the parental attitudes and practices, associated variables and barriers related to SR.


Shared reading

outcomes evaluated

Attitudes, practices, variables, and barriers


This study was conducted at Ministry of Health Ankara Bilkent City Hospital, Children's Hospital, Turkey, between 1 May 2021 and 1 July 2021. Parents of children aged 1–72 months who presented to our outpatient clinic because of well-child care or acute minor illness were enrolled.


This prospective study enrolled 624 parents of children aged 1–72 months who presented to a tertiary hospital for well-child care or acute minor illness. Face-to-face interviews were conducted using a questionnaire.

sample size

n=624 (parents)


Measure of Shared Reading Attitudes, Practices, Variables, and Barriers: questionnaire administered through face to face interviews including open-ended, yes/no and multiple-choice questions related to demographic variables, the practices and attitudes of parents regarding SR, and parental reading habits for pleasure.


The median age for starting SR was 12 (0–72) months. Daily SR activities were provided by 29.5% of the parents. Owning >10 children's books, higher socioeconomic status, attending pre-school/kindergarten and being a single child were associated with daily reading (P < 0.001). In total, 36.5% of the parents reported that they had not yet started SR and planned to start SR when their children reached a median age of 20.5 (2–72) months. The most commonly reported barriers were time constraints and the perception that their child was too young. Almost 10% of the parents had received an SR recommendation. Parents who had received a recommendation and those who had a habit of self-reading multiple times a week were more likely to begin SR at younger child age and to read daily (P < 0.001).


This study demonstrated low rates of parent–child SR activities in early childhood, particularly in the first years of life, in Turkey. Our findings emphasize the need for a national strategy integrated into the healthcare system to promote SR.


The major limitation of our study was that our data are based on parents' self-reports, which are vulnerable to recall or social desirability bias. This approach may yield biased results toward overestimating favourable reading attitudes and behaviours. Therefore, the data obtained may not reflect actual practices. The second limitation was that the children's outcomes were not evaluated by direct observation of the reading practices and home environment using standard measures and time diary methods to get reliable information regarding the parent–child interaction. These limitations should be addressed in future studies.